Magnesium is a mineral concentrated mostly in bone and muscle. Its main functions are to relax nerves and muscles, strengthen bones and maintain normal blood circulation. Because your body can’t make magnesium, you need to get it from food or from a supplement. Magnesium supplementation has several advantages. Consult your doctor before taking magnesium supplements.
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, impairs blood vessel function and increases your risk for heart disease and stroke. Researchers at Yonsei University Graduate School of Health Science and Management in Korea reviewed scientific studies regarding the impact of magnesium supplementation on blood pressure. They concluded that magnesium supplementation is effective for lowering blood pressure in a dose-dependent matter, with higher magnesium doses resulting in greater reductions in blood pressure. The findings were published in the August 2002 issue of the “American Journal of Hypertension.”
Increasing your magnesium intake might boost memory and learning, according to an animal study performed by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They found young and old rats receiving magnesium supplementation experienced changes in signaling molecules that enhance learning and memory, according to research published in the January 2010 issue of “Neuron.” Although these results are promising, human trials need to be conducted.
In research reported in the December 2005 issue of the “Journal of the American Geriatrics Society,” researchers at the University of Tennessee examined the relationship between magnesium intake and bone mineral density. Researchers found those with higher magnesium intakes had greater bone mineral density compared with those who had lower magnesium intakes.
Magnesium might also help fight migraines. Scientists at Erciyes University in Turkey discovered migraine patients taking 600 milligrams of magnesium citrate daily for three months experienced less severe and less frequent migraine attacks compared with those who took a placebo, according to research published in the June 2008 issue of “Magnesium Research.”
- "American Journal of Hypertension"; The Effect of Magnesium Supplementation on Blood Pressure: a Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials; S.H. Jee, et al.; August 2002
- "Neuron"; Enhancement of Learning and Memory by Elevating Brain Magnesium; I. Slutsky, et al.; January 2010
- EurekAlert; Magnesium in Your Diet Could Lead to Stronger Bones; December 2005
- "Magnesium Research"; The Effects of Magnesium Prophylaxis in Migraine Without Aura; E. Koseoglu, et al.; June 2008